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Michael Bach Musician
Michael Bach, Cello with BACH.Bow
Michael Bach (born 17 April 1958 in Worms, Germany), also known as Michael Bach Bachtischa, is a German cellist, composer, and visual artist.
He made numerous significant contributions to the art of contemporary cello performance; his publication Fingerboards & Overtones proposes new ideas concerning overtones and harmonics and is considered a pioneering work in the literature on contemporary technique. In 1990 he developed the curved bow (BACH.Bogen) for the cello, violin, viola and bass, which, in polyphonic playing, permits the simultaneous sounding of multiple strings, with the high arch of the bow allowing for full, sustained chords. During the years 1997 and 2001 Mstislav Rostropovich has been intimately involved in its development. In 2001 he invited Michael Bach to Paris for a presentation of his BACH.Bow (7th Concours de violoncelle Rostropovitch).
In 2012, during an exhibition on the theme BACHLAEUFE - The Imprint of Johann Sebastian Bach on Modern Times, held at Arnstadt, Germany, the first prize was awarded to the BACH.Bow. His work as cellist and composer was awarded the Gaudeamus Prize Amsterdam, the Kranichstein Prize Darmstadt, the Japan Record Academy Prize, the Millennium Prize Würzburg.
Several contemporary composers, among them John Cage, Dieter Schnebel, Walter Zimmermann and Hans Zender, have composed works especially for the BACH.Bow.
Bach Bachtischa is also a composer. His purely musical compositions are idiosyncratic and highly personal, described by him as "free from compositional conventions."
In collaboration with the visual artist Renate Hoffleit he has created strikingly original string installations. Their projects (zwischen e and f)² in Stuttgart and IM KLANGSTROM in Ulm, Germany were supported by the Innovationsfonds Kunst of the State of Baden-Württemberg. The project Schloss Kapfenburg besaitet... was listed in the Guinness Book of Records in 2000.
Exhibition of the Fingerboards in Trier, Germany 2012
In the two blogs the bach update and the cello upgrade, Michael Bach documents and analyzes projects and aspects of contemporary music as well as new insights into the solo works for violin and cello by Johann Sebastian Bach.
Michael Bach's visual works include Fingerboards (1990-2010), which capture the hand's choreography on the cello fingerboard as color impressions, Fieldwork (1994), Mit diesen beiden Händen (1994), Lagauche (1995), and Olévano (1995-).
The German postage stamp 75 Jahre Donaueschinger Musiktage, Deutschland 1996 shows his composition and drawing 18-7-92, Scetches to Ryoanji (1992).
1991 ONE8 and 108 (1991) for cello with curved bow and orchestra by John Cage, dedicated to Michael Bach and the Radio Symphony Orchestra Stuttgart (without conductor), Stuttgart, Germany.
1992 Mit diesen Händen (1992) for cello with curved bow and voice by Dieter Schnebel, dedicated to Michael Bach, together with the singer William Pearson on the occasion of the "Heinrich-Böll-Woche" in Cologne, Germany.
1993 ONE13 (1992) for cello with curved bow and 3 tapes, composition by John Cage and Michael Bach Bachtischa, festival musica in Strasbourg, France.
1998 TIERKREIS by Karlheinz Stockhausen, version for cello with curved bow by Michael Bach Bachtischa in Bayreuth, Germany.
2004 Capriccio 1828 for violin solo by Niccolò Paganini, version for cello with curved bow by Michael Bach Bachtischa in Worms, Germany.
2008 New version of ONE13 (1992/2006) for cello with curved bow and 3 tapes, composition by John Cage and Michael Bach Bachtischa, in San Francisco, USA and Stuttgart, Germany.
2010 versbrechen - ein Fingerboard für Kirchner for cello with curved bow by Michael Bach Bachtischa, Galerie Stihl Waiblingen, Germany.
2014 locus amoenus for cello with curved bow, by Michael Bach Bachtischa, Foundation Domnick, Nürtingen
2015 vierumuns for four voices, by Michael Bach Bachtischa, EXVOCO Stuttgart, City Library of Stuttgart
2018 273" für Dieter Schnebel for cello with curved bow, by Michael Bach Bachtischa, Kunstbezirk Stuttgart
Michael Bach, Fingerboards & Overtones, Pictures, Basics and Model for a New Way of Cello Playing, German and English, edition spangenberg, München, Germany 1991, ISBN3-89409-063-4
Michael Bach, Die Suiten für Violoncello von Johann Sebastian Bach, in: Das Orchester 7-8/1997, Mainz, Germany
Rudolf Gähler: Der Rundbogen für die Violine - ein Phantom?, ConBrio-Fachbuch, Band 5, ConBrio Verlagsgesellschaft Regensburg, Germany 1997, ISBN3-930079-58-5
MUSICAGE, pages 246-290 and 296, Editor: Joan Retallack, Wesleyan University Press, Hanover, USA 1996, ISBN0-8195-5285-2